The real life inspiration

I read an article this week questioning the blogging community about their source of inspiration(cf Marina’s blog). I must say I struggle myself these days. I personally blame the end of the sunny days to explain the difficulty to find the words and the need to communicate. Autumn only inspires me complaint and whine!

And to top it all, I managed to write this post yesterday which I was pretty satisfied with, but a mean mean WordPress bug destroyed my text and sent it in the Void. #verydispleasing

So here I am again, trying to recollect my thoughts about this topic.

That same day, I queued 45 minutes to fill half of my car tank up with diesel fuel. The « Gilets Jaunes » protests led to blocking supply centres in rural areas all over France – including mine! The situation seems to be improving but last weekend, finding a petrol pump which wasn’t empty was a challenge.

Spending 45 minutes of intellectual idleness behind the wheel probably tickled my blank page syndrome because later that day, thoughts started to wake up and dance in my head. Hey inspiration!

Then in the evening, as I was exchanging texts with  Snow I dragged up memories from the past, dwelling on my 20s, rambling on how wonderfull it was back then in the end of the twentieth century! (NB: that goes for me, the Old one. Snow the Young one was looking back on the early 2000s!!)

Both of us remembered that period of early independence, when you travel around and experiment life as a Foreigner, whether you were an Erasmus student  in Italy or an au-pair in England, and we both felt instantly nostalgic!

When I left France and my student life, I chose England to start afresh, and filled up my car with my clothes, CDs, and computer (for those of you belonging to the Generation Z, please check on Google the size of the computer in the late 1990s!). I found a house to share with two other French girls.


We were given a matress, a chest of drawers and we bought the bare necessities. The family I used to be an au-pair for offered me a cookware set and 2O years later I still have this fine porcelain item left.

As the house was unfurnished (but thank God it had a fitted kitchen!) the moving process was done in two short car journeys.

We brought in the wooden garden pub table & bench set which had been abandoned outside. Opened the parasol, set the fairy lights, displayed picnic blankets and tadaaa we had a dinning area. Then we added three colourful inflatable armchairs to watch the tv. And that was our lounge! The decor matched perfectly as the thick carpet and wall papers were pink, and the curtains a velvety burgundy!

Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

This was 1998. Although I had a bachelor degree, I started working in the kitchen of an Iranian restaurant. My days were spent writing letters, drinking coffee at Costa, cooking… I had no boyfriend. The car I was driving had been lent by my parents. And all my belongings fitted in one room.

Now I own a house which I share with a partner, daughter and 2 dogs. We have two cars, a Vespa scooter, a vintage Solex moped, skis, surfboards, skateboards, and an attic filled with boxes to sort out. And I plan to decluter every winter.

Still, that time when I owned nothing and had no long term-plans remains the happiest, lightest, funniest of my life.

One year after I moved in with the girls, I went back to France. My dad had died and I felt my mother needed help. I found a job in Paris… and then adult life came.

The real one. Insidious, sneaky.



  1. Oh, what an enjoyable read, Véro!!! I feel inspired – which I thank you for because inspiration has been lacking from my blog too. I might write a similar post this weekend if I get a moment 🙂 I can sooooo relate!!!! I still remember those days so well… in a way I can’t believe they are over! I’m finally admitting I grew up. On the other hand, sometimes when I look back I feel like I was really lost back then. But the thing is, I didn’t mind. I wanted to be lost for a while, adrift.
    And hahah, that computer!!!! 😀
    Are you still in touch with your au pair family?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. First, I will let myself hang in the details: I love that porcelain piece and I love the color scheme of that photo: pink and green, it is modern right now :)) And by the way, hey, you were one of the rich kids if you could own AND travel with your computer. In 2002 I was still going to internet cafes, and I saw my first computer in 1997 in the school class. That is: we went to another school, saw the computers, never touched them. Then we got back to write codes during our informatics classes. Ooh aah, you make me so nostalgic too :)) Though I would not call that period the happiest one. I feel at my happiest right now.
    thank you for the great story and that simultaneous sparkling up :))

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I found your blog through Snow’s! What a fun read, Veronica. I always wonder how life was several years back in different parts of the world, so it was fun to read your experiences back from the early 90s in Europe. Your last few lines have touched my heart, how those years with fewest possessions and plans or care in the world were also some of the best.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. it’s funny that you say you’re the happiest with no attachment and plans. I’m going through a similar phase. My mother passed and I quit my job. Now I just want to be free, and happy, and able to do what I want on a whim. It seems that the less petty, day-to-day things your brain has to concern itself with, it can be inspired by the smallest thing.

    Liked by 2 people

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